Dr. Frank E. Boston Presidential Citation

Announcing the Dr. Frank E. Boston Black Justice Fund Award Recipients


Dr. Keima Sheriff

Philanthropy is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The Dr. Frank E. Boston Black Justice Fund (BJF) is a direct response by HealthSpark Foundation to what we heard from you, our community. The BJF name, mission, vision, and goals were crafted by eleven Black community action team (CAT) members supported by HealthSpark.  These action team members agreed there was an urgent need to direct funding to Montgomery County’s Black community and to think boldly on how to address the historic underinvestment and disinvestment in the County’s Black communities. The CAT supported the development of the BJF funding priorities, the proposal, the review rubric, and developed and implemented the outreach and marketing strategies for the BJF.

HealthSpark Foundation's Board committed an initial $250,000 investment over two years to establish the BJF. In honor of its namesake Dr. Frank E. Boston, a Black medical doctor and social entrepreneur who created a hospital and ambulance corps in Lansdale nearly a century ago, the BJF invests in emerging Black leaders in Montgomery County, supports positive storytelling of Black communities, and seeks to build Black community infrastructure and power to advance justice, and liberation for all County residents. 

Complementing the work of the Safety Net Initiative, Voices for Change, and our Research and Learning investments, the BJF serves as an additional and vital strategy to create a more just and thriving community.

Various CAT members served as grant application reviewers and worked closely with HealthSpark staff to provide a holistic review of the 37 BJF applications submitted for consideration.

HealthSpark is proud to announce the following organizations were awarded funding by the CAT in Year One of the Dr. Frank E. Boston Black Justice Fund:

  • Ardmore Avenue Community Center (AACC), Sustaining the Ardmore Avenue Community Center, awarded $15,000 to advance its mission. Working holistically, AACC will add and strengthen current programming such as "Future" which includes: College Counseling, Trade Dinners, and wellness, financial literacy, and mentoring programs.

  • Coalition for Racial Equity and Social Justice, Coalition4Justice, awarded $15,000 to develop and implement a six-week YouthBuild Diversity Ambassador program, for area youth ages 11-16. Focusing on diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice, the Ambassador program will contribute to the elimination of racially based school and cyberspace bullying, explore the benefits of living in a racially diverse community, and promote greater understanding and empathy between people of different races, ethnicities, socio-economic and religious backgrounds.

  • Collegiate Bridge Inc., College Readiness Parent Institute, awarded $15,000 to create a College Readiness Parent Institute for Black parents needed to address the gap in access to pertinent college information. Funds will support parent focus groups to develop a framework for the College Readiness Parent Institute for low-income, first-generation, Norristown area parents.

  • First Baptist Church of Huntingdon Valley, Miracles Around Murray Ave, Black Historical and Monumental Stories in the Huntingdon Valley Area, awarded $10,000 for an intergenerational learning and positive storytelling project between youth and seniors within the community. The program will address youth obesity and bullying challenges designed to reduce youth suicide, while promoting healthy eating and physical activity among youth and seniors.  

  • Literacy Council of Norristown, One Book One Norristown (OBON), awarded $15,000 to facilitate a collaborative effort between public and private institutions in Norristown, including the Greater Norristown NAACP.  Grant funds will focus on literacy, community activism, civic engagement, and the arts and plans community events by partnering with an acclaimed local author, and other community members.

  • Neighbors Helping Neighbors on the Main Line (NHN), Innovative Inclusion, awarded $15,000 to broaden initiatives, elevate relevant offerings, and provide well-rounded support to families in great need. The overall goal of the grant is to expand upon NHN’s current partnerships and programming, to extend services in education empowerment and food security to an increased number of individuals and families in need, while offering higher levels of support to families facing financial hardship.

  • PA Youth Vote, PA Youth Vote (PYV), awarded $15,000 to support increased civic engagement, leadership capacity and powerful storytelling strategies among high school students, educators, and school board leaders representing under resourced, marginalized and disenfranchised Montgomery County communities.

  • Reality Speaking Inc., The Criminal Justice Advocacy Project, awarded $15,000 to increase the capacity of the Reuniting Family Bail Fund to support individuals and families in Montgomery County mounting a legal defense against criminal charges.

  • TriCounty Community Network, Pottstown Community Action Power Building & Engagementawarded $11,100 to support the Pottstown Community Action’s Love Your Block Power Building & Engagement program. The program will work with Pottstown Borough and residents to identify and design a viable solution to a pressing public concern, coordinate required municipal services to address the concern, provide mini grants to support those projects, and assist neighborhood groups in tracking and reporting metrics for their projects.  

With the launch of the Dr. Frank E. Boston Black Justice Fund, HealthSpark and its partners are excited to tap into the legacy of Dr. Boston’s numerous contributions to our County. He recognized unmet community needs, and leveraged his skills and relationships as an entrepreneur, and community leader to leverage his power and influence to make a positive impact. HealthSpark looks forward to building upon and expanding the BJF through its partnerships with these first round BJF recipients and other Montgomery County organizations and leaders who share our focus on the liberation, empowerment, and advancement of all peoples in Montgomery County.